Share this entry

telos Syllabification: te·los
Pronunciation: /ˈteläs/ /ˈtē-/

Definition of telos in English:

noun (plural teloiˈteloiˈtēloi)

chiefly Philosophy or literary
An ultimate object or aim.
Example sentences
  • It's a teleological structure, but the successful continuation of the presence of the interactive focus defers and ultimately defeats the telos.
  • The tragic hero, we are told, still treats the ethical as his telos or goal, even if this entails subordinating particular duties to its attainment.
  • The eschatological motif leads likewise to a theology that takes its orientation from the perspective of our human telos together with the telos of creation as a whole.


Greek, literally 'end'.

Words that rhyme with telos


Definition of telos in:

Share this entry


What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day haughty
Pronunciation: ˈhɔːti
arrogantly superior and disdainful